Leid Stories Stories and news that affect us all

September 12, 2013  

Hubert Henry Harrison: "The Father of Harlem Radicalism"

The recent commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom – organized as a public consecration of “black leaders” and a showcase for the Democratic Party – purposely recast the historic 1963 protest as the day Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. made his “I Have A Dream” speech.

The Harlem-born radicalism of Bayard Rustin and A. Philip Randolph, the driving forces behind the original march, terrified the political establishment (black and white) then, and still does today. Where did these men get their brazen ideas about black political power?

Leid Stories introduces the man Randolph called “The Father of Harlem Radicalism,” Hubert Henry Harrison. Our guest and guide is Dr. Jeff Perry, editor of A Hubert Harrison Readerand author of Hubert Harrison: The Voice of Harlem Radicalism, 1883-1918.

Harrison, says Perry, “is the only person in U.S. history to play leading roles in the largest class radical movement (socialism) and the largest race radical movement (the New Negro/Garvey movement) of his era. He is also a key link in the ideological unity of the two great trends of the Civil Rights/Black Liberation Struggle – i.e., the labor/civil rights trend associated with Randolph and King, and the race/nationalist trend associated with Marcus Garvey and Malcolm X.

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